Box­ing kickback claim

Sunday Times - - Sport - By DAVID ISAACSON isaac­sond@sun­day­

● A box­ing pro­moter in the North West is cry­ing foul af­ter a R450,000 spon­sor­ship he was awarded by the prov­ince’s gam­bling board was can­celled three months later.

Stan­ley Mot­suenyane, a former boxer who now runs Bam­boo Tree Pro­mo­tions, al­leges he lost the deal be­cause he re­fused to pay a R200,000 kickback.

Mot­suenyane, who has made the claims in a sworn af­fi­davit, said he was pur­su­ing a civil case against the board.

Asked whether he planned to lay a crim­i­nal com­plaint, he said he would rely on the ad­vice of his at­tor­ney.

Mot­suenyane said early this year he was as­sisted by an ac­quain­tance, Le­bo­gang Dikobe, in draw­ing up a busi­ness pro­posal to stage a box­ing tour­na­ment in Mahikeng.

Dikobe had told him to e-mail the fi­nal draft to him and Ler­ato Seepe, deputy chair of the gam­bling board.

Mot­suenyane said Dikobe was not con­nected to the gam­bling board, but added that Dikobe knew Seepe.

In a let­ter dated May 10, the gam­bling board told Mot­suenyane that his pro­posal had been ac­cepted.

“The board hereby un­der­takes to pro­vide the nec­es­sary fund­ing as re­quested by Bam­boo Tree Pro­mo­tions for the above event, which we have been ad­vised is the to­tal amount of R450,000.”

The let­ter also said the fund­ing was con­di­tional on him “ob­tain­ing the nec­es­sary ap­provals to stage the box­ing event”, such as get­ting proof that he was a reg­is­tered pro­moter and had con­firmed a venue.

Mot­suenyane ad­mit­ted he had been late in sub­mit­ting his pro­moter’s li­cence re­newal, which had caused a de­lay.

Box­ing SA CEO Tsholofelo Le­jaka said the is­sue was sorted out by May 29.

Mot­suenyane said soon af­ter that he met Dikobe, who then asked for the R200,000.

“Dikobe stated that his peo­ple will not re­lease ... funds with­out me agree­ing to give them a kickback of R200,000 from the spon­sor­ship fund of R450,000,” Mot­suenyane

Pro­moter al­leges his re­fusal to pay R200,000 bribe led to spon­sor­ship deal be­ing can­celled

wrote in his af­fi­davit. “I did not agree with him on that as I tried to ex­plain to him that BSA is very aware of the spon­sor­ship fund.”

Mot­suenyane ex­plained he could lose his li­cence if his tour­na­ment didn’t meet suf­fi­cient stan­dards.

“He [Dikobe] said ‘Ok, I will can­cel the spon­sor­ship’.”

Mot­suenyane said he was as­sured by other board em­ploy­ees the spon­sor­ship was se­cure.

But on Au­gust 14 the gam­bling board wrote him a let­ter with­draw­ing the spon­sor­ship. “This serves to in­form you that the board had to repri­ori­tise its bud­get to fi­nan­cial con­straints (sic). While the event ap­pears to be worth­while, we re­gret to in­form you that the board will not be able to fund your event.”

Mot­suenyane said he be­lieved the board’s turn­around was a re­sult of him re­fus­ing to pay the kickback.

He said his at­tor­ney was con­fi­dent he had a strong case for civil ac­tion. The at­tor­ney was not avail­able for com­ment.

The gam­bling board de­clined to com­ment, say­ing Dikobe was not an em­ployee. An of­fi­cial said Mot­suenyane had failed to meet the con­di­tions of the spon­sor­ship.

Dikobe de­nied the al­le­ga­tions against him. “He’s ly­ing, he’s just an­gry. I helped him with his pro­posal,” he said, be­fore the line went dead. He said he was un­able to re­spond to fur­ther ques­tions be­fore dead­line.

Seepe replied to an e-mail list­ing Mot­suenyane’s claims, in­clud­ing one about the na­ture of her re­la­tion­ship with Dikobe, say­ing: “I do not know any­thing about that. You can con­tact the CEO for fur­ther com­ments.”

Pic­ture: Frikkie Kapp/Gallo Im­ages

Clay­ton Blom­metjies of the Chee­tahs and Marvin Orie of the Golden Li­ons in the Cur­rie Cup fi­nal at Toy­ota Sta­dium in Bloem­fontein yes­ter­day.

Boxer-turned-pro­moter Stan­ley Mot­suenyane wants to take the North West Gam­bling Board to court.

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